Durham Return Preparer Imprisoned on State Tax Charges

Date: March 7, 2014

RALEIGH – A Durham County return preparer pleaded guilty Thursday in Wake County District Court to tax charges filed by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Garcia M. Howard, 62, of 2102 Gilman Street, Durham pled guilty in Wake County District Court on March 6, 2014 to three counts of Attempt to Evade or Defeat Tax.

District Court Judge Jennifer Knox sentenced Howard to an 18-month minimum, 22-month maximum active prison term, followed by 60 months of supervised probation. Howard was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $56,013.79 and a $100 fine. He was further ordered not to prepare taxes for anyone other than himself.

Information presented in court showed that Howard received taxable income from his tax preparation business, but understated the income on his 2007 through 2010 North Carolina Individual Income Tax Returns.

Howard was previously convicted of similar charges brought by the North Carolina Department of Revenue in 1998 and 2001. Howard was convicted in 1998 of 15 counts of aiding in the preparation of false returns while president of TPTA Accounting & Financial Services, Inc. He was also convicted in 2001 of five counts of aiding or assisting in the preparation of fraudulent returns while operating Howard Financial Services.

Howard is the owner and operator of Howard Financial Services, Inc.

The charges were the result of an investigation by the Criminal Investigations Section in Raleigh.

 


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